Staten Island 8
Saturday, June 20 at MCU Park
There goes the undefeated season.
The Cyclones dropped their home opener to the hated Staten Island Yankees 8–3 on Saturday night in front of 7,795 screaming Brooklynites.
Starting pitcher Gaby Almonte had a disastrous third inning, when he was rocked for six runs by the Evil Empire of the New York Penn-League.
But manager Tom Gamboa, who used four pitchers during Friday’s season opening win on the Rock, made the starter bite the bullet and keep chucking because it was so early in the game and because pitchers aren’t throwing on back-to-back days.
“We’ve only got so many pitchers,” said Cyclones manager Tom Gamboa, who left Almonte in for five innings, “So as long as Almonte’s pitch limit was intact, he was going to be in the game and he knew it.”
Strapping right-fielder Jhalan “Action” Jackson — who is quickly becoming the Yankees number-one prospect, hit a two-run homer against the Cyclones for the second straight game, and added a two-run double. Almonte gave up eight runs (six earned), in five innings.
The Cyclones 6–9 hitters went a combined 0–14, but Gamboa found a silver lining with reliever Christian Montgomery, who pitched a scoreless seventh inning. Montgomery struggled last year in his first start in Kingsport.
“When I saw the stats, I couldn’t even believe it,” Gamboa said.
In his first appearance as a Cyclone, Montgomery set the Yankees down in order.
“To see Montgomery go into a game that was 8–3, that took the pressure off him,” Gamboa said.
The teams head back to Staten Island for the rubber-game of the three-game set. Game time is 4 pm. If you must go, take the Staten Island Ferry. Trust us. It beats driving.